April 28, 2006


Can George Bush win back the press? (Howard Fineman, MSNBC, 4/27/06)

For the first time in his political career, George W. Bush finds himself in an uncomfortable position: he has to deal with the press on its terms, not his. For such a proud, controlling –- and, some would say arrogant -– guy, meeting the media at least half way won’t be easy. But he has no choice if he wants the last third of his presidency to amount to much. Bush has the charm to succeed, but the effort may require more candor than he can afford, more humility than he has, and more changes in policy than he will allow.

Put aside all the laughable assertions in that paragraph, and focus closely on the contention that Bush must -- absolutely must -- cuddle up to Mr. Fineman's journalistic colleagues in order to save his presidency.

Why exactly is that necessary? If the press simply reports the news and doesn't actually set the terms of the debate, that is at least a questionable proposal. If, on the other hand, journalists are like the rest of the human race and have real problems separating their biases from their work, then this idea may make some sense. For those with eyes to see, Mr. Fineman has just put a torch to the journalist's catechism.

Posted by Matt Murphy at April 28, 2006 12:20 AM

That is funny. The press has never given Bush a pass in last 5 years, are they going to be nice to him now? Bush didn't care when he was running for re-election, why should he care now? Whatever Bush's accomplishments were, they were accomplished in spite of the press, not because of the press.

Posted by: ic at April 28, 2006 2:25 AM

ic -

Exactly. Which is why the press alternates between rage, condescension, confusion, and snobbish sarcasm when dealing with George Bush. He won't play their game. Hiring Tony Snow hasn't changed that (well, maybe just an iota), but they won't figure that out, either. And they will be spluttering on the night of Nov. 7 once again.

Posted by: jim hamlen at April 28, 2006 8:23 AM

... win back?

Posted by: erp at April 29, 2006 7:55 AM


Yeah, in what region of never-never land (and I mean never land) has he been residing?

Posted by: Matt Murphy at April 30, 2006 10:42 PM